Darwin's laboratory, stunning mountains and cultural treats
Guided Walking Holidays Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands
Imagine an early stroll along the quay in Puerto Ayora, the pelicans gathering in hope of some fisherman’s scraps. Or picture the sun rising across snow covered Chimborazo on the barren altiplano.
Perhaps the most diverse of all our Latin American holidays, this is as good a microcosm of the best of Latin America as you will find. Starting in the Andes at Quito, the most charismatic of capitals, we head south along the corridor of volcanoes, walking under Chimborazo (6,263m). You will learn how the summit of Chimborazo is the furthest point on earth from its centre. Taking a ride on the Devil’s Nose train is another highlight. We have many opportunities to observe and learn more of local life visiting homes, markets and communities along the way.
Cuenca is a beautifully preserved colonial city well worth exploring. Continuing from here we walk in the Cajas National Park. At over 3500m this lakeland landscape will be at the highest altitude we will reach on this tour. We fly to Baltra Island, a small island of the Galápagos, have lunch in our Puerto Ayora hotel before taking a boat journey to Isabella Island. Here we pass a flamingo lake on the way to the hotel. We visit Sierra Negra Volcano, the 2nd largest volcanic crater in the world, visit a turtle interpretation centre and hopefully encounter a myriad of diverse Galápagos wildlife.
Returning to Puerto Ayora we explore the area and spend a day, travelling by boat, to one of the other islands with more diverse habitat, flora and fauna.
On each island we’ll walk with an expert naturalist guide to make sure we get plenty of exercise whilst enjoying the huge natural diversity of each island for which the Galapagos are world famous, including sightings of Sea Iguanas and Blue Footed Boobies.